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The Warsaw Voice » Culture » March 12, 2008
Cracow
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Predatory But Attractive
March 12, 2008   
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The National Museum in Cracow has for over 10 years exhibited the work of the city's best graphic artists. Its most recent exhibition showcases the work produced over more than 25 years by graphic artist and painter Jacek Sroka.

Sroka was born in Cracow in 1957 and graduated from the Graphics Department of Cracow's Fine Arts Academy. He has won many international and Polish prizes. Since the 1990s, Sroka has more often exhibited abroad than in Poland and his work is to be found in London's British Museum, Vienna's graphische Sammlung Albertina, the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris, the Prefectoral Museum of Art in Kumamoto, Japan, and New York's metropolitan Museum of Art.

Despite his work being easily recognizable for its individual character, Sroka combines the traditions of the Cracow school, such as a tendency to use metaphors and the grotesque, with elements of expressionism. He depicts common subjects and motifs from history, literature and art, which has made him popular throughout the world, as well as taking inspiration from modern-day issues. His individual rendering of these subjects, unbiased culturally and based on his own experiences and obsessions, has produced some unusual results. His subjects often have a predatory nature and his work emanates black humor but his use of color results in original and attractive graphics and paintings.

Sroka's displayed work is full of symbolism, signs and metaphors and depicts a subjective, middle-class view of the world at the turn of the century and its crises.

The exhibition includes over 200 of Sroka's graphics, paintings and drawings and a major part of it is devoted to the graphics. Among his paintings are some of his best known works as well as some that rarely go on public display and examples of his newest work, exhibited for the first time.

The exhibition runs until May 4 and is in the main building of the National Museum in Cracow, 1, 3-ego maja Ave.
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